THE MAGIC OF CHILDREN'S PLAY!

Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

Recently at preschool, we made up a beautiful sensory batch of Goop (Obleck). We used a lavender fragranced body wash mixed with water, corn-flour and purple colouring (giving a pretty mauve appearance when mixed with the flour). It smelt gorgeous and was very appealing.

7 22 & 25 GOOP

We have been fortunate enough to have some glorious sunny weather over the last few days despite it being the middle of Winter here. The air is cool, but the sunshine on our bodies is delightful. So why restrict this activity to inside? Anything that is typically done in the inside environment can equally be achieved in the outside environment, and sometimes, with some exciting and unpredictable outcomes.

1 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

We are loving our new sensory table that manages to hold most of our messy play substances in the one place and allows multiple children to participate in the same activity together. Goop has an amazing capacity to elicit ‘language play’ and that really does require a social setting.

2 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

When children first come together to experience goop, it is wonderful to observe the stages of their engagement. For most children, the first touch is tentative. A step into the unknown. Cursory glances often pass between the children as they begin to touch its squishy squelch-iness. They are looking for queues from their peers, ‘Is this okay?’ ‘Should we be doing this?’ ‘Is it safe?’ ‘Will we make a mess?’ ‘Will we get in trouble?’ All possible questions that may spring to mind with their first encounters. Unfortunately, Messy play can often be seen as a taboo by some children based on their previous experiences!

3 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

Initial delicate finger pokes, to the dipping of fingers eventually give way to the immersion of hands. Faces change from tentative glances to twinkling eyes and broad smiles as they acknowledge their brave step into the unknown. Something new with some amazingly wicked potential!

4 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

Words are immediately forthcoming, some real and some nonsensical in nature, but all tending to rhyme in a flow of musical lyricism. This is the part that I personally love!

5 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

On this particular day, with the decision to set the goop activity up outdoors on our new hexagonal sensory table, we saw some wonderful social play emerge. The children began by experimenting with a variety of different ways to move, pummel, pound, squish, squelch and drip the goop. Once the children seemed to gauge its range of potential, they gradually started to work in unison. Then one child took on the leadership role, directing the flow of play.

6 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

7 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

C. and S. set the game in motion, C. taking the lead. Beat the goop in unison with open hands, then run around the table dragging one hand across the goop as you go, stop and push hands into the middle to meet, and then repeat.

8 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

This pattern of play was followed up by brief periods of individual, exploratory play whereby each child would become absorbed in their own experience. However, the slightest queue from one of their peers would set the play in motion again.

Lifting and dripping to create rain…

10 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

Rolling in hands to make balls…

11a Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

12 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

12a Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

Flattening the balls to make pancakes…

13 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

14 Everything that we can do can be done better, outside.

Adding music to this experience would be a great way to help the children extend this pattern of play through discovering different ways to move to the music with the goop. Musical statues would prove to be an exciting way to observe the properties of the goop. What happens to the goop when our bodies stop moving?  Ah messy play is soooo much fun!!!

You Can Find More Goopy Play Right Here:

OOEY GOOEY GUMBA!

EEEW… THAT’S DISGUSTING!

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Comments on: "Everything that we can do can be done better, outside." (2)

  1. That looks so cool, think this is my fav sensory experience, we call it gloop & it’s great to see the tuff spot has made it Australia too.

  2. Love this post. I am a fairly new preschool teacher and I love offering gloop to my students but I have never done it inside. I guess the mama in me would rather all that mess happen outside on the grass – less mess for the staff to clean up and the children are therefor more free to make a bigger mess. I love it!

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